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Hypertension. 1989 Feb;13(2):115-21.

Enalapril prevents stroke and kidney dysfunction in salt-loaded stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats.

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Department of Pharmacology, New York Medical College, Valhalla 10595.


The influence of chronic treatment with the angiotensin I converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor enalapril on blood pressure, kidney function, and survival was examined in stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRSP). Male SHRSP that were fed a Japanese rat chow plus a 1% NaCl drinking solution beginning at 7-8 weeks of age developed severe hypertension and stroke; 14 of 18 untreated control SHRSP died by 14 weeks of age and exhibited evidence of cerebrovascular lesions. When enalapril (15 mg/kg/day) was included in the drinking solution of 15 SHRSP, blood pressure was initially reduced by only a slight degree, whereas survival improved markedly; only one of 10 SHRSP died before the rest were killed at 18 to 21 weeks. The remaining five enalapril-treated SHRSP lived beyond 36 weeks and on histological examination exhibited no evidence of cerebrovascular lesions. Chronic enalapril treatment also prevented the greater urinary excretion of protein and severe renal lesions observed in untreated SHRSP but did not affect urinary salt and water excretion. In anesthetized rats, glomerular filtration rate and tubular reabsorption of water were lower in untreated control SHRSP when compared with enalapril-treated SHRSP. Mean arterial pressure was comparable in both groups. These data support a possible role for ACE inhibition in the prevention of stroke and maintenance of kidney function independent of any marked change in blood pressure of SHRSP. Whether the protective effects of ACE inhibition relate to reduced angiotensin II formation, increased tissue kinins, or another mechanism remains to be determined.

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